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E#171 Pull Marketing – Attract Clients with Confidence

This episode is about pull marketing – attract clients with confidence

I was asked recently for tips on how to ask clients to work with you, or engage people in a sales process. This episode covers what I call a coaching approach to attracting clients with confidence and creating clients with ease. 

What is Pull Marketing?

I use the concept of ‘pull’ marketing. It means creating demand for your services or products, rather than pushing them onto people.

If you are a coach, you are perfectly equipped with the coaching skills that can help you do this easily. All you need to do is to flip your thinking and redefine the words that currently seem icky and uncomfortable, like “marketing” and “sales”. 

In this episode, I’ll talk about 
* What is Pull Marketing?
* The 4 Step “Pull Marketing” Process
* How to get it right?

The essence of pull marketing, from a coaching perspective, is to speak with conviction about your why, to be aspirational and inspirational, and to build or tap into a community around that. Then to match your values and services with the people who need them, and offer to support them through a journey if and when they are ready to take it.

Here is a rough 4-step process that I use, that others have used, and that really works.

4 Step “Pull Marketing” Process

Step 1 – Start with the Why

Pull marketing starts with clearly communicating your big why and your bigger mission and really unpacking it.

The why naturally speaks to a huge problem that people want to solve – confidence, fear, isolation, self-doubt – or whatever it is. 

It paints an aspirational picture of what’s possible (and what we can achieve together). People see themselves in that and create a shared vision.

Speaking to the why regularly ignites the fire in people who are thinking about change but are afraid (it’s not you, it’s them!) – they move through the stages of change to become ready. 

They sit up and take notice. Your inspirational and aspirational approach gives them a sense of hope, of potential, and that you are the leader who can help them.

Step 2 – Give a Vehicle for Engagement

By communicating your why in your content, people are attracted and engage with you as they become readier and readier to change (and therefore buy).

They want to stay connected because it feels good to be around you.

They may not be ready to buy yet.

So, create a vehicle for engagement. Give them a place to go to stay in touch – a meetup group, a LinkedIn group, or some other ‘container’ for like-minded people.

They will want to be part of that community and they will have ownership if they can co-create it with you (and this is the coaching way). 

In that container, you can speak more to the journey they are on and help them solve day-to-day problems that they’re facing, and to get peer support.

Be authentic, and speak to both obstacles and wins. Keep the positive momentum going.

The community will become very problem aware, and solution aware, and are equipped to evaluate how important it is to change at this time.

Step 3 – Add More Value

With the help of your content in steps 1 and 2, some of the people in your audience will become more ready to change and will start to prepare for change.

You can add more value in an event of some kind – a workshop, webinar, etc.

In that session you would unpacking your why (related to their problem), and then introduce how you help people solve that problem. What has worked for you, and/or your clients?

What you are selling is support to walk people through a 4-step process or formula for helping them go from point A (problem) to point B (solution).

Engage the audience and make them part of it. Make the content specific and relevant to them. And right up front, let them know that at the end you’ll let people know how to work with you if they want to.

Step 4 – Make a SMART Offer 

There is an offer at the end of this event (and you can make this offer once a month at least, for your general audience). The offer is your vehicle to actually help those people to find the confidence and support they need on such a big journey.

The offer is essentially formulated like a SMART goal (I am patenting this idea) 

It talks about the:

  1. Specific problem you are helping with and type of people who have that problem 
  2. Two Measurable elements – how long it is (e.g. 8-week program) and how many people you have capacity to work with (e.g. 5 clients)
  3. Actions that 
    1. people need to take e.g. must be committed to attending weekly sessions, and, 
    2. the actions that you will take to help them overcome their obstacles and objections
  4. Realistic results that people will get if they take the actions – and the outcomes that those actions will generate e.g. have a bigger impact, be a role model for their kids
  5. Timing of the offer – e.g. contact you by a specific date, starting on a specific date

Then, you must have the next steps mapped out clearly to enquire or take up the offer.

I like to have a good fit call to see if the person is truly ready to change, and if they are a fit for working with me.

If they aren’t interested, it might not be the right offer or the right time.

If they aren’t a fit, you can refer them to someone or something else.

In either case, you can STILL offer them value through ongoing connection with you on (LinkedIn, email, community etc) and you can invite them to share the message with others who need the courage and confidence to navigate the journey.

Getting it Right

This method works for me, and others. 

Your courage to do it is borne from your bigger why, the thing that you MUST do no matter what – which is the kryptonite for your fears.

If you can engage people in your why and share the dream with them, and co-create a vision, you will both be able to put the fear of marketing and sales aside and focus on making a change, and a difference. 

Summary

Attracting clients and selling programs is a big challenge for a lot of coaches. There are mental and emotional hurdles and often limiting beliefs in the way.

Your courage to make offers is borne from your bigger why, the thing that you MUST do no matter what.

Pull marketing is a strategy that leverages coaching skills and strengths.

The four-step process I shared today includes:

  1. Starting with the why (as the focus for all your content) 
  2. Creating a vehicle for engagement where you dive into the what 
  3. Adding more value by offering events that truly help the people who are becoming ready to change
  4. Making a SMART offer that helps people connect with you so they can benefit from your skills, abilities and support.

Ready to get clarity on your pathway to success?

Understanding who you are and what you need will allow your business to thrive! If you’re truly ready to break old habits and get out of the rut I encourage you to check out the Habitology membership.

Learn more here:

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E#158 What You Promise in Marketing

This episode is about what you promise in marketing

Are you worried about what you’re promising in your coaching promotions and feeling like you can’t deliver? 

I want to explain a few basics about messaging, what coaches do, and how to describe your services in a way that is congruent, transparent and authentic so that by the end of this dialogue, you feel clear and comfortable with what you are promising.

In this episode, I’ll talk about 
* What Coaches Do and Don’t Do?
* What are promotional messaging basics
* Describing HOW your solution helps

The Backstory 

A lot of coaches tell me they are worried about making big promises that they can’t keep, or about giving people the wrong idea.

Some coaches also feel they aren’t a good enough coach to help the person get a result, so they are worried about being able to deliver.

Today, I am going to help you to clear up these myths and solve these challenges once and for all, so you can promote your services confidently and authentically.

Let’s start with a reminder of what coaches do and don’t do, some promotional messaging basics, and then talk through some examples so you can be clear on what you ARE promising, and what you are NOT promising. Then we will finish with an explanation of what health and wellness coaches do.

Remember – What Coaches Do and Don’t Do

Firstly, and before we break down the marketing copy, remember that as a coach, you are not treating or administering any therapy to a client that would make you responsible for their result.

As a coach you are helping people to create the time and space to focus on developing habits that will get them a result they want. And that’s very different.

Please keep that in mind as we proceed with how we help people.

Also remember that your promotional messaging is NOT about what you do or how you do it. You need to know how to answer that question if asked (and I will cover it at the end), but your promotional copy is ALL about your niche client.

Let’s dive in.

Promotional Messaging Basics

I think part of the reason that coaches struggle with their advertising is that they don’t know what to say to attract clients and then explain what they do to these prospective clients.

The foundations of good promotional messaging are built on trust, rapport and relationship.

Good messaging creates these things by focusing on three foundational points.

Right now, I’d like you to imagine a triangle that has those three points 

  1. Your niche clients’ big struggle in their words
  2. Your niche clients success or vision, in their words
  3. Your solution and how it fills the gap.

Your advertising needs to speak to those three things.

I think where a lot of coaches get caught up is in describing the problem and solution. When they do this, coaches feel kind of responsible for fixing the problem and creating the results.

No, no, no.

This is the first myth I want to clear up.

The reason you describe the niche clients struggle and success is so that they recognise you as someone who understands their specific needs. 

They can recognise themself in your words, so you become visible and attractive to them.

Here’s a really bland example. It’s like me saying – are you wearing a red shirt and white sneakers, but wish you were wearing a fancy black tracksuit?

In this example it’s clear that I’m not going to give you a tracksuit! I am calling out anyone wearing a red shirt and white sneakers who wishes for something more stylish!

So that’s the first point – speaking to their struggle and success to show that you understand them. Your marketing copy needs to cover these two points in the triangle.

The next bit is explaining how your solution fills the gaps.

Note that this is not describing WHAT your service is – it’s explaining HOW it will help them. 

Let’s break it down so you can get clear on what your role is in their journey, and how to convey it.

Describing HOW Your Solution Helps

When describing how your solution helps, you need to be clear that you are helping people to follow a process to get to the result they want – you are NOT promising the result itself.

Your clients are the ones who are responsible for doing the work, not you. You can’t follow them home and make it happen.

But you CAN help people to get a result by helping them follow a process. 

It’s very clear that we want people to be attracted to the outcome that they want to achieve. 

And you were going to speak to that outcome, but you’re not going to promise to deliver it. 

You are going to show them the technique and the process for getting there and you are going to hold them accountable to doing that work. And that is the difference.

Let’s use a fairly benign example to illustrate this point – dentistry.

Let’s say you are a dentist who is also a coach and you are doing a promotion for your services.

You know that you have to make the service sound really appealing and so you want to talk to the results that people are going to get. Then you’re going to walk them through how they’re going to get that result so that it’s clear that you are not responsible for the result but they are.

The dentist example

Let’s say that your program promises to help clients achieve clean, white teeth free of plaque and holes, following a proven, three step process.

Sounds good, right? So what is the three step process?

Well firstly the dentist is going to make sure that you’re accountable to brush your teeth every day three times a day following his recommended method. He’s also going to make sure that you are accountable to floss your teeth twice a day following his recommended method and at the right time in relation to brushing your teeth. 

And thirdly he’s going to recommend that you use a specific toothpaste and mouthwash at the time that you’re brushing your teeth.

So as you can see it’s a very simple three step process that anybody can follow. 

The problem is that most people don’t follow the method or aren’t sure about the best way to do it, or they lack commitment and self responsibility to keep doing it. 

And that’s why coaching is so important. If the dentist was a coach he would be helping you to figure out how to make those daily habits happen so that the result would follow.

The weight loss example

Let’s say that your program promises to help clients lose weight by developing a healthier relationship with food, based on two proven strategies.

Sounds great. What are the strategies?

You might decide that managing portion size and mindful eating are two techniques that are especially useful.

So your program might include discussion and resources on managing portion size and how to eat mindfully.

Your clients may choose to implement these (or not) in addition to their own weekly goals.

Your program helps them to develop habits that are linked with weight loss, and that if done consistently, should see weight shift. The weekly goal setting and review process helps to create accountability and navigate obstacles.

As you can see, in this case, the client may or may not have their own tools, but they might like to learn and implement ideas on portion size and mindful eating that will help them to slow down, manage portions better and effectively lose weight.

The accountability around action is the secret sauce here! 

Explaining what you do as a coach

As you can see, it’s very important to be clear on using your client’s own words in the promo copy for your program.

If asked, you should also have a clear and simple explanation of your role as the coach.

There are many ways to approach this and it’s a whole separate podcast, actually.

But for now, let’s assume you want to position professionally and give some info on the benefits to the client. That is the ‘rough’ formula for your statement of what you do. 

The Coaching Psychology Manual by Moore and Tschannen-Moran discusses the fact that coaches facilitate client-directed neuroplasticity – in other words, forming new habits that change the brain. 

Words to this effect, and/or discussion of coaching psychology and/or positive psychology are relevant to set the scene around what you do.

In addition, remember that we help clients develop their own foolproof process for change, that they can enjoy and be consistent with, so that the result can be realised.

Coming up with a simple statement is important. Make it relevant to your audience, but it could be as simple as something like this:

Health and wellness coaching is based in coaching psychology and it facilitates neuroplasticity – your brain’s ability to change.

My role as your coach is not to advise or direct, but to help you achieve the things you are struggling to do on your own.

When you work with me, I help you to develop your own foolproof, automatic habits and process around healthy eating/sleep/stress management/other  so that you can do X consistently and confidently.

Summary

Marketing is all about your ideal client and it needs to focus on their story.

It’s easy to get lost in explaining coaching services or being plagued by the thought of promising what you can’t deliver, or simply underdelivering. 

As you can see, the thing clients are stuck with are not WHAT to do, but HOW. 

Therefore, your job as a coach is to explain the process by which you help them, in words that they understand, so that your scope of practice is clear and that your offer is mouth watering!

Ready to get clarity on your pathway to success?

Understanding who you are and what you need will allow your business to thrive! If you’re truly ready to break old habits and get out of the rut I encourage you to check out the Habitology membership.

Learn more here:

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E#143 Just Be Yourself and Be Authentic in Marketing with Natasha Berta

This episode is about just being yourself and being authentic in marketing with Natasha Berta

MW: Hi Natasha. So great to see you and thanks for being here on the podcast today.

NB: Hello, it’s lovely to be here, we’re so smiley. If you’re listening on the podcast, you’re not going to see our gigantic smiles of happiness to see each other but if you’re watching the YouTube version of this clip then you might.

MW: Now, I just love chatting to you and I think a lot of people listening to this would have heard our last session. But can you just introduce yourself just in case there’s a new listener that doesn’t know how awesome you are.

In this episode, I’ll talk about 
* Marketing
* How people think and handle their marketing

NB: Oh yes. I have a little tiny marketing agency called Connected Marketing which I’ve just branched into having a team in the last couple of years and it finally just felt weird to not just be called Natasha Berta anymore because I was saying I was doing things but actually just was helping so that’s exciting. And I would say that I mostly focus on our online presence. And so by that, I mean your website or your social media or however it is that you connect with your audience and also growing your audience and I love doing that with Facebook ads. Jess helps with things that people don’t want to do like turning their blog in 250 million social media posts and spreading them all around the universe.

And what else do I mean? I love email marketing. I love all the tech of marketing I would say, mmm, that’s the bit you all hate. That’s why I’ll get you guys and your team to do my stuff.

MW: Yes, I hate all that stuff.

NB: A lot of people do not like it and no wonder because it’s like minutiae and you just want to get on and do your work, like your zone of Genius stuff.

MW: Right. And I guess anyone listening to this podcast is going to be like me and think I’ve got to create posts and what a drag. So I make sure I put your details in the show notes.
And so, we are going to get a bit ranty today, right?
NB: Probably we’re going to talk about that old, imposter syndrome, that all that old judging yourself, comparing yourself to other people and say “well, why do you think you have to be like everybody else out there?”
What’s your first thought when you hear that, if you don’t have a strategy, you’re going to be like a little boat in a big sea just getting tossed around. You know, like the times that I get that, I imposter syndrome, like “what should do – this or that is” when I don’t have a proper plan and then I’m very vulnerable to, you know, marketing of people trying to sell me things or I’m taking advice from multiple people and just getting really confused and I would say it’s so important.
It doesn’t mean you have to do what I say or you have to do what Mel says, or you have to do what any big-name person says. It’s just that you should choose one and just give it a red-hot go for, probably at least three months, maybe 12 and that when I have a strategy, I feel so impenetrable.

I see people’s marketing and I’m like, it’s like an Iron Man suit or something. Like I just, it just washes off me and I don’t feel any compulsion to leap at it. I might look at what they’re saying and be interested but it’s so easy for me to resist because this my plan is to create a bunch of small courses and to leverage my business through selling courses on a one-to-many level. So I’m trying a different kind of leverage. I’ve tried a few different things and this is my year of making little courses and selling them one-to-many.
So because I know that that’s my strategic move for this year, there have been a couple of funny things. Like I saw the Big Shiny tender for the $5,000 website or $15,000 pitch to someone and I start with her for a few days and I just thought, actually no – I’m doing this course thing, if I start bridging out and getting distracted I’ll go off course.
And then my, my strategic plan hasn’t gone as well because I diluted my attention. So, I feel really excited that this year, I’ve got a fantastic strategy that I’m in love with, I’m fully committed to, and yeah, I’m undiluted.

MW: Funnily enough, that’s my strategy for this year.
NB: I think it depends on what stage of business you’re at. So, I think it’s helpful to build up one-on-one clients first.
MW: Absolutely with one-on-one first.

NB: And then once you’re fully booked this, an obvious next step is to scale and grow.
MW: And I think the other thing too, is that it’s easy to get wrapped up in somebody else’s success. But you also have to look at your own things. Like I see so many people go “I need to have a Facebook group and I need to be in there every day and I need to learn how to do that.” But if you hate Facebook, you’re going to hate showing up for work every day and it’s like, why do you have to be like everyone else? Why can’t you just do it your way? Like for me I’ve figured out what I like to do is podcast and turn that into a Blog and have your team, put it out there on social media as snippets on Facebook, LinkedIn and Instagram. So that’s what I do. And I lead people to an information session or a free call.
I’ve stopped doing my email newsletter list which some people might say, oh, that’s terrible, but I’m doing it my way and I’m going to roll with it for the next 12 months and see what happens.
NB: I’ve just posted about this last week on social media as well, especially for people who either have another job and then their coaching or consulting little baby business is sort of a side thing or if you’re a mother and any kind of business of your side thing, you can’t follow certain people on social media because they don’t have kids or they don’t have a side hustle, they have 40 to 60 hours a week to dedicate to their business baby and you simply cannot achieve. What they can achieve in half the time with this psycho-emotional pressure of this other thing like for parenting.
It’s very intense having other people in your life and if you have another business then you’ve got or, you know, or a job, you’ve got all those people take your energy as well. So it’s just noticing what’s your energy resource of time or money and making smart choices with that and just turning some people off like you just have to choose not to follow certain people.
Now, when I think certain people, I just scroll past. I’m like, I like you. I love you. I dig what you’re doing but you cannot serve me right now. It’s going to mess me up if I try and take your advice.
MW: So that’s a really important point that you’ve kind of touched on a couple of times now is that you’re clear on what you’re doing. And you’ve got to keep that front of mind and let that guide your decisions as in, “No, I’m going out of my lane if I follow that person know I’ve got a switch that off. No, I got to stay focused on what I can do.
NB: And I think a key piece that backs that is the business Vision which I know you are so good at covering like I’m really clear about what kind of business I want. What kind of days I want? How sustainable? I want my business life to be?
Two years ago when I would do business Vision, it would be really vague and I just didn’t get it, but I guess after a long enough in business, you have enough days where you’re cracking your own whip, you’re not eating, you’re not exercising, your burning yourself out that you come to a point where you’re like oh that’s my vision for my business is actually to feel good to eat well too, rest myself and for it to be sustainable.
And something that I actually want to even do next year.

MW: That’s such a good point and you know, you wonder why do people fall in the hole? When you create a vision at first and you’re not familiar with meeting your own needs, even like health and wellness coaches, who know this stuff, still do it, right. But they’re comparing themselves with people who’ve got a 10-year established track record in business and they go “I’ll never be that person.”
But it’s like any other part of health and wellness. It’s like somebody who wishes they could lose 30 kilo and they’re comparing themselves with a size 8 person or somebody that says, oh, I wish I was fit as that marathon runner. They’re just looking at the end result after hours and hours and hours of persistence and hard work.
And I think that’s that important part of the vision is to say, maybe I aspire to that but what I want to achieve now, and what I need to do to get there, what a my strengths like, you can definitely learn by the way, somebody else does something but you don’t have to follow their exact process to the letter and like in health and wellness coaching, we say, oh there’s no cookie cutter approach.
And yet when it comes to marketing and business, everyone wants to follow a cookie cutter approach, it’s so funny.

NB: Well, that makes me think of that like weight loss as a metaphor. It’s like everybody has a different Constitution. Like I’m only five six but I weigh 85 kilos. I’m not that fat honestly at the BMI just the nightmare for me. But even if I lost 30 kilos, I would still just look like I would, I would still just look a lot like this, you know, like maybe my tummy and my bum would be slimmer. My face would be a tiny bit slimmer and I’m just never going to be a size 8.
So business-wise, if I look at someone who’s really great at networking, who’s really extroverted, who has loads of time and just loves going and hang out, who’s got all the fancy frocks? Who’s just that kind of front person. Like, constitutionally I’m not like that, like, I’m really sensitive. I’m probably a little bit introverted and I know what I need.
I need lots of downtime and my digestive stuff gets in the way of me like, you know, because I’ve got some gut healing stuff to do or, you know, I’ve got food sensitivities or whatever. So in the same way like yeah I don’t know I guess if you look at someone who’s doing well and you want to align your vision with that, I guess it’s worth doing that kind of Abraham Hicks thing. Whether you’re into that or not of like you know they say we’re just out and about and we’re just kind of information.

Yeah, look at someone who’s famous and rich and has a great business and you sort of want to collect them into your life like in, you’re going to sort of register that like that’s part of my future Vision.
It’s worth being super specific and just noting like oh which bits are really actually achievable. Like if I don’t have a 40 hour a week, ten thousand dollars a week business does that can that actually fit inside my life container with me the way I am? Like,
That person’s possibly constitutionally quite different to me. So yes, notice what they’re doing and pick like cherry pick the bits of their life, that you really.
MW: Yes, yes, absolutely. And it’s so funny. I recently went to Grace Lever’s doing weekend because someone said to me, you could totally do what Grace does.
And I thought, well, I’ll see what she does. And it’s this huge production. This huge event with a team and three or four hundred people online. And a lot of selling and while I can see the appeal of the business and how it works and what she’s able to achieve, I’m not that person and I don’t want to do that.
And I think a lot of people get stuck in “I should be like this, and I should do it like that, and I wish I was like that person.”
But you also have to be honest with yourself and go I’m not that person. Yeah, I mean, and I can do that, like, I actually don’t want that.

NB: I reckon you’re actually smarter than her at least and like, at least, as good as hers. And, and so, maybe that’s what the person has seen. They are seeing some kind of echo of that. Your advice is as good or better than hers, but that doesn’t mean that you have to be her.
NB: One thing I learned was when I was doing Kate Bush dancing a few years ago. So fun. So you’ve got like 20 or 30 women in a room together all doing the Wuthering Heights choreo and she split the group and she said okay so half the group will perform in the other half could watch them.
So I was in the first group to perform and I was the whole time just thinking that because you can see yourself in the mirror is I’m so stumpy, I’m so lumpy, like like the way I move is not like Mica led the dance persons like, I don’t know if mines really that good.
And just all the self-talk of performing and just hated it and sat down and watch the other people. And then I noticed that each woman has her whole own beautiful way that they dance, and it’s not like Mica. But each woman, like, I just cried. I just cried and I cried because I realized that the way I take in information and the way I am body in this life and then the way I express in this life is as each of those women and we all contain that like we are all a very unique filter that ingests information and then creates it and expresses it out in such a moving and beautiful and wonderful way.
And we don’t have to be or it’s just actually not possible or desirable to try and fit in someone else’s frame. It’s just gross.

MW: It’s true. And as you’re just describing that I was thinking about the people that you naturally attract and I do honestly, believe and what I teach in my passion to profit program is start. They’re like, who are you attracting? Who are the people that are naturally drawn to you and resonate with you? They’re the ones with the similar personality or the complementary personality, the shared values, are the people that are going to buy your stuff?
If you’re trying to be somebody else, you’re not going to attract those natural connections. You know, you need to be yourself and be authentic.
The best marketing is authenticity, is my catchphrase, and, and you’re going to get those right people because, you know what, Brooke Castillo says. You can be the juiciest peach in the bowl, but some people like bananas.
NB: So, stop trying to pretend to be a banana and be a juicy peach December. That makes me think, you know, I’ve seen some people lately and I know what they’re like in real life and then I see their videos on social media. I’m like, why is she acting like that?
And I think I got a couple of friends and a client who does that and like why is she talking like that? She never talks like that in real life and it just confuses the crap out of me? And I think yeah, what are you going to attract? If you show up like that, like that’s not you. That’s not the you that I know.

But then I know that there are these hurdles particularly with marketing oh you need to do video. Yeah, you need to do video but you know, maybe there’s other ways like if you’re a great writer, maybe there is another way you can get around it. Because if you’re not able to embody on video just as your natural self, I don’t know how that’s supposed to work and I know my first video was in a Facebook group and I could not stand it. I literally wanted to delete it straight away and then we’ll how do, you know, don’t delete it because I had cut. I was a mummy. I was thinking the mummy and I had piles of washing behind.
And me, and I could not stand to listen to my own voice. I could not stand my own physical appearance, like it was just a visceral and I got through that. And then I posted my first public video and a troll, some trolled me. And he said, you know, the reason I left the city, you like a parasite on the face. Okay, I’ve heard about this because I was in a supportive business group and I’d heard that if you start getting trolled on your videos, it’s a good sign, it means you’re showing up, you know, don’t take it to heart. So gratefully, I mean, it still hurt, but greatly I was able to kind of divest from that instead of clean. Just kind of set that free, but there were definitely hurdles but now I’ve just done so many videos. Like, sometimes it’s, I don’t even care how it sounds.
Sometimes, I watch my own videos back and I listen to myself and I’m like, that’s pretty good. Like now, I’m in a place where I’m really okay with it. Plus I have a video on YouTube that has 50,000 views that is me with wet hair hunched over with all my jowls with bluetac photos in the background and it’s had 50,000 views.
So I’m like, okay you it really is about the value that you give and that video is how to put faces in circles in canva. If you Google that might come up and it just literally gives people the information that they need in that moment. So, you know, people could check out our how to blog to grow your business course.

Think about their SEO and think about what are the things that people are typing in because that can be a great way to just organically get some people to find you. If you know what they’re asking for, you can create content to slot that in but where I was going with that was a bit of a little segue little appendix and coming back to the intestine of the conversation.
MW: You were talking about video and I did want to add to that. That audio is just as good. Like, there are so many people that listen to podcasts on the way to work and staff and while they’re walking and if you have an awesome voice and you love talking, why not do that instead? I mean, we both know somebody that hates being on video, but loves doing podcasts.
Actually it’s not me because I’m on video and I love video but we know somebody you and I and she doesn’t actually do a podcast but she does audio really well.
NB: That’s right. And that is the key piece. Really easy with content. If you’ve got one piece of content, you’ll be amazed what we can tease out of that. Even if it’s a three minute audio that we can get tons of social media posts out of that.
There’s this great app called headliner. That will turn audios into little videos so you can actually turn audios into videos. I mean it’s not you it’s just a static photo with an audiogram over the top like a wavegram and that makes it a video and it still gets great reach, the robot loves them because it thinks they’re a video. So yeah you don’t have to get on video but you do need to find a way to share your Juju.

Like all the good things you have to do is to find a way to share that consistently. I mean you just showing up on the regular really moves the needle. Hmm.
MW: And also, getting on the stage a little bit too. You know, you can submit an article to Mamma Mia online. If you are a good writer and you get a bigger audience there or like Sarah Rusbatch has done some ABC and other radio interviews, a lot of people listen to the radio.
I’ve done radio before, as well. I had a Weekly Wellness session on our local radio station here in the country and people would come up to me in the street and go “Oh, you’re that person on that wellness segment.” You get in everybody’s ears, in their brains.
Even though videos really popular people have busy lives, I can’t sit still and watch a video.
NB: Yeah, it’s very difficult as a mother and I would say, like, I’m just reading them how to break up with your phone, and there are people who they don’t want to be on social media.
I mean, I never really wanted to in the first place. It was my work. I’m happy to do it for work. But in terms of how I receive information I might read your blog, you know, I might be more inclined to read your email then to find you on social media now, so it’s worth knowing that you don’t have to do the social media thing.
Leonie Orson, who is massive, recently just quit social media and I mean, she’s already very established. So I feel like she’s in a different position.

MW: Yeah. You could definitely make it work.
NB: It doesn’t have to be cookie cutter there. It’s a big fat experiment. That’s what nobody wants to hear.
You need to try something, but give it a good chunk of time and then re-evaluate and go again. That’s what I do. That’s what you do.
MW: I built my first coaching business face-to-face, without anybody looking at my website or social media. It was all talking to people. And it’s the quickest way to connect because you’ve got all the benefit of the visual cues and the body language.
And if you’re afraid to get on video, get out there in person and talk to people and I guess the, you know, the common theme we’re coming to here is you have to kind of know who you are and what you stand for and build up a level of confidence to put yourself out there, whether it be online or in a blog or face-to-face.
Like I’ve met people who say I’m so terrified about posting my first blog and what happens when people read it? And as we know, you’re on page 7 million of Google and no one’s going to see it anyway until you share it.
NB: I can totally relate and I started writing a bit more now and I’m coming around to writing and I think there’s loads of options, and you know, if you need a safe space, what can be nice is to share a blog, or your first piece of content with just a few trusted colleagues or friends but maybe don’t send it to the wide world. If you are feeling really tense and I think that’s the thing.

You break down those barriers with little achievable steps and then actually your body realizes, I’m not going to die. Like I’m not in the savanna. I know I am not actually going to die and once you’ve done it a few times, then you just kind of ease up about it and you know that you’re safe and you know that it’s an okay thing to do here. And it’s, you know, it’s also that evolving Journey. Like what works now you might get sick of it. Like I did a lot of email list, newsletters and then I went actually, this is hard work for me. I don’t want to do this.
MW: It means a learning experience, the whole thing. Think about what you were like when you were a kid, I don’t know about you, but I was incredibly shy and I didn’t want to speak to anybody or be seen by anybody. And I’ve had to do a lot of work to overcome that, but I went to Melbourne last week and did a pitch in front of a room full of people and I loved it – so good. I just thrived on the opportunity to do it and I thought, wow.
Remember if I took my ten year old self had looked forward and said, what are you going to be doing in the future? I never would have guessed that.
NB: Yeah. And the other thing that came to mind for me is like, if you’re 30, you have enough life experience to help anybody who’s in the early 20 years, mid-20s, you’ve got enough experience to help anyone who’s in their late teens. Like wherever you are, you have already got enough experience and like, even before I had a Commerce degree, I had enough life experience.
If I’d known I could have totally just become like a personal transformation coach or something. We all are sitting on a ton of knowledge and care and love and ability to support other people. And that’s really valuable and it’s what makes you, YOU.
Your unique life experience and your interpretation of that and how you process things and how you overcome challenges, that’s what people buy at the end of the day, right?
They believe you to be credible because you have these skills and strengths and experience. And I think also, there is an energetic resonance there. Like, you call it, the, what do you call it?

MW: The high chemistry clients.
NB: There are people that just need to work with you and you could almost like, be teaching them to make bread or you could be teaching them to change a tyre. It kind of doesn’t matter because you guys just need to hang out. There’s some kind of catalyst for change in your relationship and quite, possibly leave for both of you. So yeah there’s lots of levels you know the way we need to hang out with each other that’s often where the niche is.
MW: A lot of people think about or teach that you should start with a niche and then drill down and I think it’s totally reasonable to say instead, “who’s the person that you love being around?” and then to go and see what all these people have in common that you can help them with. Because ultimately, why would you want to work with people that drain you?
NB: Exactly. And nobody wants that. There are those right people in your personal connections that you could give a free session to who would write you a testimonial who are already high, chemistry people in your life that would love to help you. And yeah, so you’ve already got six potential clients, just, you know, even if you’re a pretty low-key person.
MW: I think we just solved the problems of the world to know that was gonna happen. Now it’s easy to be captain hindsight to look back and say these are the things that work but I guess from our experience we’re saying to people at the beginning of that journey or who are trying new things, just do it your way, give it a good crack given enough time and get help if you need and especially get help from Natasha Berta at Connected Marketing.

NB: I’ve got heaps of cool courses now on like all good things for newbies as well. I just doing MailerLite and MailChimp at the moment and it has been really fun – I’m excited.
So, I’ll be polishing all of those up and rehashing, some old Instagram, and it’s just actually been really fun. Just talking about little nibbles of things.
MW: Super fun, bitesize learning to empower your growth.
NB: Oh, I need your copy team!
MW: Thanks so much for making the time today to catch up!

Ready to get clarity on your pathway to success?

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Episode 103: Four Legal Essentials for Business

Are you unclear on how to be legally compliant and protected in your business? 

Today I want to answer some questions that have come in from students in my Passion to Profit business training program and from some of my private business coaching clients, about the legal essentials of business.

I’m sure you’re aware of why it’s important to operate your business in a legally compliant way, so I want to introduce you to some of the basics that you need to have in place to do that.

In this episode I’m going to list four legal essentials for business that you need to be aware of, so that you can operate your business in a safe, professional and compliant way.

Just a note that I previously published an episode on must-have legal agreements for coaching businesses, and you can listen to that episode here.

I am hoping to secure a special podcast guest on this topic in future – stay tuned.

1. Appropriate Insurance

Any practitioner needs insurance that’s appropriate to their profession and level of risk associated with it, which could include the sale of products. 

There are two types of insurance that you normally buy in a package:

  1. Medical Liability / Professional indemnity, and
  2. Public liability.

Let’s talk about the professional indemnity aspect first.

This is designed to protect you if someone sues you for loss, injury, omission or breach of duty from using your health coaching services. 

In partnership with taking out indemnity insurance, it’s essential that you work within your scope of practice and can prove that it’s your intention to work that way and that you actually ARE working within scope.

This is where formal policies and procedures come in. 

Policies state your intention and include statements of your scope of practice and the standards by which you deliver services and/or products. 

Any practitioner needs insurance that’s appropriate to their profession and level of risk associated with it.

Procedures back up your policies by outlining the specific steps you take to ensure safety, quality, privacy etc in your day to day operations. 

Note that policies and procedures are only evidence if you are actually running your business in alignment with them!

Now let’s talk about public liability.

This is designed to protect you if a third party sues you for accidental injury or damage sustained while using your service.

Imagine that you are holding a workshop in your home and someone trips on your extension cord and smashes their nose on the side of a table and needs costly medical attention.

OUCH! 

That person might decide to sue you to cover their medical bills, claiming that you didn’t take due care to provide a safe environment.

Apart from ensuring safety basics for any events or services you deliver, such as putting a slip-proof mat over your cords and tucking them away safely out of reach of people’s feet, it’s essential that you have public liability to cover you in this situation, and many others that fall under the banner of liability.

It’s important to ensure that your policy includes legal defence costs so that you have adequate legal support to defend allegations made against you arising from your Health Coaching advice or business operations.

If you run a coaching business, then I recommend checking out insurance cover via our industry association – Health Coaches Australia and New Zealand Association.

2. Website Disclaimers

Do all Australian websites need a disclaimer?

Your website needs disclaimers to prove that it is fit for purpose and to state the intention of how the information you provide should be used.

Remember that you can’t control how people interpret your words and ideas. 

So if you give opinions or advice, even inadvertently, a reader may decide to sue you because they experienced loss, misfortune or health issues after reading one of your blogs, or buying one of your DIY products, and misinterpreting the application.

Here is a great blog by Legal123 on this topic

They say that “every website contains information, and in most instances there is a specific intention for the information on the website. A disclaimer will help prevent a viewer suing the website and owner for any loss suffered from taking this information and interpreting it in the wrong way.”

3. Complying with Copyright

According to the Australian Copyright Council, copyright is free and exists the moment you create something in material form. There’s a great fact sheet that I’ll link to in the notes.

In other words, the programs, resources and client worksheets that you create automatically have copyright applied.

When it comes to your website, the whole website is not protected but all of the content you create and add to it IS protected by copyright.

And if you decide to quote somebody or use somebody else’s images or words, you need their permission to do that otherwise you are breaching copyright.

So, what about all those great free images that you get from places like Unsplash.com to use in your blogs or on your workbook covers?

Some sites like Unsplash say that you can use images for free, but they do prefer you to attribute authors in your blogs, and they have a couple of conditions on use.

In the design platform Canva, you can access free images and have freedom of use, but there may be conditions on how paid images may be used in a commercial setting.

The takeaway is – if you are using images, text or music that someone else created, you may need permission to use it but you will need to check the terms of use for that item.

In any case, make sure you include a references section with a hyperlink to the source in any published material that draws on others’ work.

4. Client Data Storage Security

Life was easy before the internet. You simply needed a lockable, fireproof filing cabinet and a pledge to keep records safe and secure for 7 years, before archiving them until the 15 year mark at which point you would shred them.

If you operate in the hard copy world, this is still valid.

But if you’re working online in any capacity, you need good digital security.

There are two parts to client digital data storage and security: 

  1. Making sure that clients sessions are stored on a secure cloud platform if using, and 
  2. Ensuring security of your own PC.

Regarding platform security, I want to share this blog that seems to be independent and gives a great comparison guide. It rates OneDrive as the best for security and privacy as compared with Dropbox and Google Drive at the time this podcast was published.

Even if you’re not using the cloud to store client information, you need to ensure that your computer and digital data are secure.

Individual businesses may be less likely targeted/attacked by hackers, but it’s no guarantee.

Two things you can do to beef up your security are:

  1. To share files with clients via a secure upload/transfer program like wetransfer, then move them to your C drive (off the cloud) or a plug-in external drive that you can lock away in a cabinet.
  2. It’s also critical to have a firewall, virus and malware software to reduce or eliminate the issue of hacking. Malwarebytes is a free online, trusted tool for scanning for and eliminating malware.

Summing it Up

Aside from business law, which I’ll discuss in a future podcast, and legal contracts, which I discussed in a previous podcast, there are four essential ways to ensure that your business is legally compliant and protected. They are:

  1. Appropriate insurance, backed up by policies and procedures
  2. Website disclaimers
  3. Complying with copyright, and
  4. Client data storage security

I have included links in the notes that will help you with these areas. I’m not a lawyer but I’ve been in business and around contracts for a long time and have seen things go pear shaped for others – as well as having a couple of near-misses myself and am grateful I’d done the right thing in both cases to protect myself from client misuse.

Putting the necessary legal infrastructure demonstrates that you’re serious about your business and about operating to a high, professional standard. 

Let me be clear – most of your business activities are probably safe, compliant and harmless. 

But I encourage you to safeguard that by putting the necessary legal infrastructure in place to get your business up to an appropriate standard of legal compliance and protection.

Aside from anything, it demonstrates that you’re serious about your business and about operating to a high, professional standard. 

Ready to get savvy about all aspects of your coaching business?

Knowing what to do can make it easy. If you’re truly ready to break old habits and get out of the rut I encourage you to check out the Habitology membership.

Learn more here:

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Episode 101: Two Hot Marketing Success Tips

In this episode I’ll be sharing two powerful aha moments that my clients have had this week, so that you can get really comfortable with marketing AND do it with confidence, and sell your stuff like a boss.

This past week I have had two really interesting conversations with a couple of my clients about what marketing is and what marketing isn’t and how to get into the right mindset to really embrace marketing and do it well. 

These conversations were eye openers for my clients and it helped them to totally get a different perspective on  marketing, so I wanted to share them with you here today. 

The tips are to help you 1. feel totally comfortable about marketing and how to do it, and 2. To sell your services with a sense of conviction.

Tip #1 – a comfortable marketing perspective

One of my clients is SUPER good at connecting and networking with people, yet she has always shied away from the idea of ‘marketing’

I explained to her that, essentially, marketing is exactly like the process of making friends.

You need to invest in friendships and earn the right to be a friend before you can ask them to help you move house, or babysit your three kids for a weekend, right?

So in the same sense, marketing is a process of getting to know your kind of people who have a common problem and interest. And it’s about networking with colleagues in the same way, having general conversations on points of interest and staying in touch.

You’re staying connected with those friends (potential clients) and talking about things that matter to you both. 

You can do this on an email list, or in a FB group, or via a WhatsApp feed, or a meetup group, or whatever way you want.

The point is, whichever way you choose to build and maintain a community of ‘friends’ (prospective clients), you need to show up consistently and talk to them about what matters.

By being a good friend – supporting them, offering help and value, helping them stay motivated or inspired – they will want to reciprocate.

So every now and again, when you DO make an offer, free or paid, they’ll either want to buy it, or recommend it to others, because they think you’re amazing.

Once I’d explained marketing this way to my client, she had a massive shift and it suddenly opened up so much understanding and possibility for how her marketing could look, going forward.

Tip #2 – celebrating success to sell more, more easily

I have helped several clients with sales conversations recently and there seems to be a common theme – the feeling of I’m not good enough.

Sound familiar?

Most of us are taught that we shouldn’t be boastful, or that we should be humble, or that we shouldn’t talk ourselves up.

I totally agree! Humility is an important and attractive trait.

BUT you can be humble AND promote yourself at the same time in an authentic way, so that you can sell more easily.

The main obstacle most people face is that they’re stuck in the ‘I haven’t done anything amazing’ headspace.

The way to get around that is to celebrate your success – then the authentic sales copy will come tumbling out.

Here’s an example.

I was speaking with someone trying to reach people in a new niche, and she was feeling pretty disheartened by what she described as a ‘lack of ideal clients’ in her latest program.

With some coaching conversation around her successes, it was revealed that she had more clients than she thought. In fact, 50% of her current clients were her ideal clients.

Further, those 50% of clients were all very well networked and could introduce her to potential opportunities in the corporate space.

Celebrating success created a fresh perspective on things.

Coupled with Tip #1 above, suddenly a whole new world opened up for this client of mine, in terms of marketing and she left our session feeling energized, excited and very proactive about connecting with people (instead of marketing) and expanding her niche.

By celebrating her own wins, she was able to see what she had achieved and how to go out and talk about the wins of her clients so she could attract more of the same.

I had two other experiences like this in the past week and it made me realise that I had to share this with you!

In all cases, it all comes down to that good old coaching question – what are you making this mean?

The facts of the situation never change – it’s your interpretation of them – or what you make them  mean – that affects whether you feel like a loser or a winner.

The great thing is that you can control your thoughts.

And to succeed in anything, in business or life, you need to believe in yourself and your methods. 

In Summary

Marketing and making friends follow roughly the same sort of process. You have to have some general conversation to build trust and rapport over a period of time – at least a few months – before you can expect anything in return. You need to give first in order to receive, as Stephen Covey would say.

Marketing is a process of getting to know your kind of people who have a common problem and interest.

In addition, when you celebrate your successes, you see valuable wins which can help you to either feel more confident in talking about what you do, or even better, to help you speak about the results your clients achieved, so you can attract more of the same.

It all comes down to your thinking patterns – they rule your results.

If you want to master your thinking and beliefs about your business, visit melaniejwhite.com/habitology and join my monthly membership where you’ll gain the skills, structure, support and confidence you need to take action and get traction in your business.

Ready to get more comfortable with marketing?

There are habits can help you sell more easily! If you’re truly ready to break old habits and get out of the rut I encourage you to check out the Habitology membership.

Learn more here:

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Episode 95: Validation and Profit

This episode shows you why and how validation using rigorous, high quality data is your secret weapon for helping your clients to get better results and make long lasting change, and to create more value, more sales, higher prices and better profit.

Today’s episode is called validation, and I’m talking in relation to results that your clients get in your coaching business.

In my last episode I talked about how to sell more coaching programs with the inclusion of monitoring data, and that’s the backstory for today’s episode.

I’ve chosen the title ‘validation’ because I want to show you why and how rigorous, high quality data is your secret weapon for helping your clients to get better results and make long lasting change, and to create more value, sales and higher prices.

What is validation?

Let’s start with a simple definition.

  • The action of checking or proving the accuracy of something.
  • The recognition or affirmation that something is valid or worthwhile.

 Change is hard for our brains, and data gives our brains the validation they need to decide a habit is worth continuing.

Why Validation Matters

Let’s start by talking about why validation is important.

Let’s say that your client is living a stressful life, and she quite likes the idea of regular meditation and wants to start up a regular habit to help her relieve stress.

To create a consistent habit, you know she’ll need to convince her brain that it’s worth it.

That’s because the human brain prefers to run efficiently, on autopilot, doing the things it already knows how to do well, so it can focus on threat, survival and fun stuff.

Therefore, according to your client’s brain, having to bring focus on developing a new habit is a chore and possibly a risk. 

Change is hard for our brains, and data gives our brains the validation they need to decide a habit is worth continuing.

Aside from learning how to do the habit, her brain requires a process of ‘learning’ a whole bunch of micro habits and rewiring entrenched behaviours that happen before and after the meditation, before it can get the habit to happen automatically.

For example, she’ll have to learn to stop what she’s doing, say no to people, set aside time, stop saying she’s too busy, and then do the darn 10 minutes of meditation.

As she juggles her competing priorities and her already entrained habits that create stress, her brain will start to realise that starting a simple habit like 10 minutes of meditation is actually hard to fit in, commit to, and do consistently. 

That will probably feel uncomfortable. She’ll have the urge to continue with her ‘more important’ stuff.

And a day after she meditates, she may feel totally stressed again, so her brain will question how effective it really is, because the results may not be huge or immediate. 

Her belief system could jump on the bandwagon. She might start telling herself that this is too hard. She might tell herself that I might as well give up, because I am probably going to fail anyway.

This is why validation with evidence-based data is so important.

It does more than just prove to your client’s brain that a habit is safe and worth the effort. 

It also provides tangible evidence that your client is capable of change and that the results are worth pursuing.

This is especially important for habits that have little to no visible, immediate impact.

For example, there are habits like physical exercise where you feel the endorphin rush and sweat afterwards. There’s a tangible impact.

Compare that with deep breathing exercises to lower your blood pressure and stress hormones. Those are two pretty invisible measures that your habits had a gradual, positive impact. No immediate reward there.

That begs the question – how do we help our clients monitor and measure progress? What kind of data are going to be meaningful?

Let’s look at two types of data – qualitative, and quantitative.

As she juggles her competing priorities and her already entrained habits that create stress, her brain will start to realise that starting a simple habit like 10 minutes of meditation is actually hard to fit in, commit to, and do consistently. 

That will probably feel uncomfortable. She’ll have the urge to continue with her ‘more important’ stuff.

And a day after she meditates, she may feel totally stressed again, so her brain will question how effective it really is, because the results may not be huge or immediate. 

Her belief system could jump on the bandwagon. She might start telling herself that this is too hard. She might tell herself that I might as well give up, because I am probably going to fail anyway.

This is why validation with evidence-based data is so important.

It does more than just prove to your client’s brain that a habit is safe and worth the effort. 

It also provides tangible evidence that your client is capable of change and that the results are worth pursuing.

This is especially important for habits that have little to no visible, immediate impact.

For example, there are habits like physical exercise where you feel the endorphin rush and sweat afterwards. There’s a tangible impact.

Compare that with deep breathing exercises to lower your blood pressure and stress hormones. Those are two pretty invisible measures that your habits had a gradual, positive impact. No immediate reward there.

That begs the question – how do we help our clients monitor and measure progress? What kind of data are going to be meaningful?

Let’s look at two types of data – qualitative, and quantitative.

Qualitative (subjective) data

Normally coaches use tools that are subjective, that is, where the client rates themselves.

We use various quizzes, questionnaires, 1 – 10 rulers, sleep diaries, logging sheets and other self-rating tools to help clients understand what they feel, who they are and what’s changing for them.

They use these to rate hunger, energy, mood, stress, sleep quality, response to food and similar types of information.

Qualitative data is very important because it captures how the client feels at any given moment. The problem is, that information is subject to bias.

A client who self-rates may feel exuberant one day, and miserable two days later, so their mood will skew the data.

Even the more high level, scientifically validated questionnaires can be influenced by bias.

I had a client do a quiz several times because she wasn’t sure that her answers were accurate and she got a different answer every time.

How would you feel about the data if that was you? 

How much would you trust it? 

Could you rely on it?

That’s why coaching programs can be bolstered by rigorous data collected in an accurate way.

This kind of data provides the validation our clients need to believe that they can do something, and to believe that their new habits are ‘working’ and ‘getting results.’

Quantitative (objective) data

This is essentially what quantitative data is – objective data that is measured accurately using numbers.

Even better, using calibrated devices to measure physiological data that shows the impact of our habits on our bodies and minds.

One of the best examples is the bioimpedance scale which measures body composition – in other words – bone, fat, muscle and water. 

While not as accurate as a Dexa scan, bioimpedance is an easy and accessible method to quantify body weight, muscle mass, bone mass, hydration and body fat percentage.

Obviously the more expensive models give more accurate data, and a Dexa scan is the most accurate.

I used this scale early in my business – from 2005 onwards – as a marketing tool. At health expos I had lines of people out the door wanting to get their body composition measured, while other vendors stood at empty stands, wondering what was going on.

 

Data provides tangible evidence that your client is capable of change and that the results are worth pursuing.

I used this scale in my coaching program to help clients see tangible changes in their bodies – inside and out – in conjunction with other qualitative and quantitative measures.

These methods gave my clients plenty of evidence that their bodies and minds were changing and, it gave me a huge data set that could be used to demonstrate typical client outcomes in my marketing.

For example, I could specify that 99% of my clients lost weight during my program, ranging from 3 – 15kg, and with the majority of that being body fat based on the numbers recorded.

These were all things that they measured during the life of their program, so they had great awareness of what had changed.

They loved the physiological data as it proved their lifestyle changes were having an impact and it validated how they felt.

You can imagine what that did for my marketing!

My clients would say things like – “there is real science behind this”, and “I have gotten so much more out of this program than I ever expected!”

That’s just with a simple scale.

More recently, some higher tech options have come up to get even better quality data.

One that comes to mind is the heart rate strap and watch that measure exercise performance.

There are a variety of wearable watches that measure various physiological data. 

I can imagine what my clients will say in future when I use these devices as part of their coaching program and I’m very excited about the value, precision and accurate response measurement that can be developed.

It will help us to add tangibility to our somewhat intangible services.

It will help your clients to quickly identify which of their habit based interventions are having the greatest impact, and help them pinpoint where to focus their energy.

They will have a greater appreciation for the effectiveness of habit-based intervention, and a greater awareness of their own best solutions for managing physical and mental health.

And finally, it will give coaches a competitive advantage over others, help them to sell more programs, at higher prices and retain clients for a longer period, as has been my own experience in my own coaching business.

I am excited to share some new research in this area in coming months.

For now, if you would like to know more about monitoring and measuring, please get in touch at melaniejwhite.com/contact.

Ready to use data to improve your coaching business?

Knowing howto use data effectively can make all the difference. If you’re truly ready to break old habits and get out of the rut I encourage you to check out the Habitology membership.

Learn more here:

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Episode 93: Client Strengths = Better Marketing

In today’s episode, I want to show you a great way to capture important information about your clients so that you can learn more about who your ideal client is, who you naturally attract, and how to become more of a client magnet.

There are really two parts to working with clients in a coaching relationship. 

The first part is to help our clients become more self aware so that they know what thinking and doing habits need to change. 

When our clients are more self-aware it facilitates the second main part of coaching clients, which is helping them to experiment with new lifestyle habits and make those changes in a way that suits them, their needs and their personalities.

Coaches use a variety of quizzes and questionnaires to help clients become self-aware. I call this ‘grow’ content because every time a client learns something about themselves it helps them to grow a little.

And one of the main tools that coaches use is the VIA strength test.

In this episode I want to walk you through a step-by-step process of enhancing the professionalism of your practice, and using the VIA strengths test information to enhance your marketing.

VIA strengths test

The VIA Institute on character is an organisation that combines the science of strength with the practice of well-being. 

According to their website:

The VIA Institute on Character helps people change their lives by tapping into the power of their own greatest strengths. Established as non-profit organization in 2001, we set out – and continue to – advance both the science and practice of character, and empower those on their strengths-building journey. That’s why we make our research accessible to everyone and offer the VIA Survey free of charge, worldwide.

 

Every time a client learns something about themselves it helps them to grow a little.

They say that “your character strengths are the qualities that come most naturally to you. They say that every individual possesses all the 24 character strengths in different degrees, giving each person a unique character strengths profile. And when you know your strengths you can improve your life and thrive. The research reveals that people who use their strength a lot are 18 times more likely to be flourishing than those who do not use their strengths.”

The VIA character strengths test is a core piece of strengths-based coaching and it sets the scene for introducing positive psychology into your coaching sessions, and helping your clients create an upward spiral with their health and wellbeing habits.

Enhancing Your Professionalism

As a scientist by training, I’m a strong believer that every time you do something in your business it makes sense to do it in the most professional, replicable, efficient and streamlined way possible. 

And the first tip that I want to share with you today is something that is going to help you build your professional, credible reputation.

You can actually create your own professional account on the VIA website and you can store basic client results in that website. 

Firstly, what that means is that you can give your client a personalized link to the VIA website that has your practice name or business name in the URL.

Here’s how you set that up.

Firstly visit www.viacharacter.org

Click on the ‘Professionals’ menu link in the top right of the screen.

Choose ‘Pro Sites’ from the dropdown menu.

Read the information on that page, scroll down and go to the Create Your Pro Site Now button, and follow the prompts.

Now, you can send your clients a unique URL with your business name in it, taking them to the VIA test.

My link is http://melaniejwhite.pro.viasurvey.org

Now, when your clients take this survey you will be sent an email letting you know that they have completed it and you will be able to log into this website and see a list of clients who taken the strengths survey, the date that they took the survey, and you’ll be able to click through to see their results. 

This is all free. 

There are other things that you can get with a paid account but you probably don’t need those things yet.

Know Your Niche, Enhance Your Marketing

Here is the really interesting thing about the data that you collect over time.

I have a couple of coaches that work in my business as licensees for an 8-week weight loss program that I developed. 

Recently, I downloaded The VIA survey data for all of our clients from that program.

Then, I made a spreadsheet that lists the top 5 strengths of the clients who have recently taken the test. And then I sorted them by coach. 

My theory is that we tend to attract people who are 80% like us and I wanted to see if this strengths data reflected that different coaches are actually attracting different kinds of clients.

And the results are pretty amazing. 

For the clients that I have coached recently around weight loss, their top 3 strengths fairness, gratitude and honesty. All of my clients have had at least two of these in their top 3 strengths.

For another coach in my business, all of her clients top 3 – 4 strengths were honesty, kindness, love and humour.

So very clearly the two of us are attracting slightly different kinds of people. Honesty is something that all of our clients have as a very high ranking strength. 

But hers are slightly different to mine. 

I also see that my clients are much more consistent in the top 3 strengths than the other coach, and perhaps that means that she works with a slightly broader range of clients or that her niche is less defined than mine.

What does this all mean, and how can we use this to improve our marketing? 

Well looking at my client list, and knowing that I seem to attract people whose top strengths are gratitude, fairness and honesty, I know more about my ideal client AND I can more likely attract them with sales copy that creates those sorts of emotions.

I can present my offer in a way that seems fair.

I can be open and frank about who it is and isn’t for, and what is or isn’t included.

I can share my gratitude for being able to help others around through the power of their transformation.

This is just a bit of an idea of how you could use this information but it’s really amazing to see these trends and to understand the power of this information.

Regularly checking in with strengths survey results and collating the data in this way might make a big difference to your ability to attract and engage potential clients. 

Summary

To wrap up today’s episode as coaches we like to help clients become self-aware and to use their strengths to experiment with and form new habits.

We use a variety of quizzes and questionnaires to create aha moments and raise self-awareness.

The VIA character strengths questionnaire is a recognised tool that many Health and wellness coaches use.

You can go to the VIA website and create your own professional account, as part of your professional positioning.

Being more self-aware helps our clients to experiment with new lifestyle habits and make those changes in a way that suits them.

In addition to that, you can collate client data in a spreadsheet and identify trends that tell you important things, like how clearly defined your niche is, the common ground between you and your ideal client, and the types of strengths and emotions that might resonate with them in your marketing copy.

I’ve included links in the transcript of this episode to help you get started on getting to know your clients better.

Ready to know your client better?

Quizzes are just one of many tools that can make your coaching business easier and more effectictive. If you’re truly ready to break old habits and make your life easier I encourage you to check out the Habitology membership.

Learn more here:

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Episode 88: Packaging Coaching Part 2 – Interview with Irena Geller of Irena Geller Coaching

Confused about how to package coaching with an existing service? This is part 2 of a series of interviews explaining how to do it.

Today, I talk to Irena Geller about working with a ready-made coaching program.

Ready to package coaching with your existing service?

It might be what you have been looking for. If you’re truly ready to break old habits and get out of the rut I encourage you to check out the Habitology membership.

Learn more here:

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Episode 79: Interview with Terri Sparrow on packaging coaching with a product

Confused about how to package coaching with an existing service? This is part 1 of a series of interviews explaining how to do it.

Today, I talk to Terri Sparrow about packaging coaching with a product.

Ready to package coaching with your existing product?

It might be what you have been looking for. If you’re truly ready to break old habits and get out of the rut I encourage you to check out the Habitology membership.

Learn more here:

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Episode 63: 5 Steps To Increase Your Buyability

I want to talk today about the concept of buyability and increasing your buyability.

Yes, I think buyability is a made up word! 

The concept is about what makes you and your services easy to purchase – so people become willing or even desperate to buy from you.

I want to explore this concept FULLY in this episode so you can do what’s necessary to sort out your services and the marketing of them, to make them compelling, mouth watering and irresistable.

I’ve spent literally thousands of dollars on sales and marketing training.

But it’s the thousands of sales conversations that have taught me the most. 

A person’s tone of voice and body language give more clues about whether someone will buy or not, than any training course can.

To become more buyable, you need to combine the theory of sales and marketing with emotional intelligence and a bit of BQ.

Trust Comes First

The foundation of buying a service is trust. 

If somebody doesn’t like or trust you, it’s highly unlikely that they will buy from you.

That’s why people say marketing is ‘the long game’. 

It takes time and consistently showing up to build trust and rapport and relationship, to lay the foundation for a future sale.

If you try leading with sales because you’re desperate to earn money, you’ll break trust.

Now, here are the 5 steps to increase your buyability. 

Step #1 – Be clear about who you are, who you are not, and what you stand for.

People buy your why. They buy from you because you are similar to them in values, experience, personality or demographic.  

So you must first figure out who you are and who you naturally attract, so you can enhance and focus your marketing to those people. 

Example: My mission is to help mothers to regain their career confidence and get back into the workforce so that they can create independent wealth and feel valued.

Action step: write out your vision. Then, dig deep and find out what drives you. What your bigger mission is in the world. The impact you want to have. 

This will help you discover the values and motivators about your much bigger mission.

Step #2 – Discover the ONE thing that keeps them awake at night, worrying.

People buy when they are emotional or irrational about a problem they can’t solve.  

When you find out what that problem is, you can show people how your service can help them solve it.

Example: I know what it’s like to look in the mirror and loathe what you see. That’s why I created this program – to help you start accepting and even loving yourself as you are.

Action step: have conversations with at least 10 people who are your ideal clients to discover what their biggest challenge is, and the words they use to describe it.  

People buy for emotive reasons, when they have a big problem they can’t solve or a big vision they need help to achieve, from people that they know, like and trust. 

Step #3 – Describe your services as benefits or results they will get, using their own ‘feeling’ words.

People buy results – and more importantly, they buy when the offer you make is clearly and specifically describing the result they think they want or need.  

Don’t assume you know what people want or that you know better. This is actually condescending at words, and ignorant at best. 

Example: In 8 weeks, you will reclaim your get up and go and feel motivated, energized and committed to your fitness. 

Action step: have conversations with at least 10 people who are your ideal clients to discover what their biggest challenge is, and the words they use to describe it.  

Step #4 – Describe who your service is for, and not for.

People buy when they are ready, willing and able to do the work they need to do to get the result they want. 

You don’t want uncommitted people or tyre-kickers. By listing the specific traits of your buyer, you are helping people identify themselves as someone you can help. The time wasters won’t bother to enquire.

Example: This program is for women who struggle with anxiety and it’s affecting their relationships, and they are finally ready to get some help to fix things.

This program is NOT for you if you are unwilling to get out of your comfort zone, or if you have been diagnosed with a mental health condition.

Action step: based on the conversations you’ve had, get really clear on who you naturally attract, are best suited to working with and who is ready to buy. You can use that to create some text to describe who you are and aren’t looking for. 

Step #5 – You will find your ideal client where YOU are.

Back to Step 1 – people buy from those who are similar. Your ideal client is 70 – 80% like you. 

So use marketing strategies and tactics that leverage your skills and strengths.

Example: you hate going on social media and prefer meeting people face to face. Your ideal client will probably also hate social media. 

So stop trying to force yourself to go there, build a website instead, and get out to networking meetings.

Action step: If you have completed steps 1 – 4, you should have a description of what you sell, to who, how they benefit, and who it’s for and not for. Armed with that information, you are ready to start marketing. 

Choose 3 marketing strategies that best suit your personality, learning style and communication skills. Then, for each, define the tactics you will use to reach out to clients. Then make a plan to start doing them through the year.

It is this last step that will generate you a consistent set of leads and sales. You will probably need to treat your first 3 – 9 months as a big experiment and give each tactic a red hot go for at least 6 months to see what works and what doesn’t.

It takes time and consistently showing up to build trust and rapport and relationship, to lay the foundation for a future sale.

Summary

People buy for emotive reasons, when they have a big problem they can’t solve or a big vision they need help to achieve, from people that they know, like and trust. 

Usually we buy from people who are like us. 

If you follow the five steps in this episode, you will increase your buyability, because you will more likely connect with and engage with potential clients in places where you both like to meet others.

Ready to work on your marketing strategy?

Send me an email to request more information on a tailored service I offer. If you’re truly ready to break old habits and get out of the rut I encourage you to check out the Habitology membership.

Learn more here:

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Episode 10: 9 of the Best Reasons to Target a Niche

9 of the Best Reasons to Target a Niche

Today I want to dive deep into why you might want to target a niche. 

Why define and target a niche in your business?

Here are 9 of the best reasons I have:

1. Your niche sets the scene for everything else you do in your business.

Most people in business make the newbie mistake of rushing into a big marketing effort but before you can market anything and sell anything you need to know what you want to sell, and who you are selling it to, how it’s going to help that person, what you’re going to charge them and why it’s great value. When you know those things you are ready to start marketing with confidence. Then you get clarity on what sorts of services you’re going offer, how you are going to market to them, where you are going to find them and what sort of business systems you’ll need.

2. Targeting a niche allows you to stand out and be known.

There’s a saying that goes: “If you don’t stand fo something, you stand for nothing”. If you want to be different to every other service or coach out there, targeting a niche allows you to become a specialist, you become known for one thing. It helps you build a profile, and be recognised. It’s much easier to be known and attract clients that way

3. Jack of all trades, master of none.

If what you do and the results you offer aren’t clear, then your potential client listening will question your ability to be good at those things. It raises questions of trust. Most people when seeking help are trying to solve one specific problem. You will be easier to find if you have a clear message. You can position as a specialist in one area, it creates trust, and makes you easier to find.

4. You can’t multi-task problem solving.

Remember that coaches work on helping people change their habits. It takes about 68 days to form one habit. That’s the average according to research. As a coach, you want to help people get real tangible results in the time frame that you are working with them, which will typically 6-12 weeks. They are not going to get the results they are after if you try to throw the kitchen sink at them. If you help a client work on one issue and maybe 2-3 habits around that one issue, they will get far better results than if you try to do everything and cram it in. Keep out the kitchen sink and focus on that one thing. That’s what targeting a niche is all about.

 

5. Your vibe attracts your tribe.

Whether you like it or not, you are going to attract a certain type of person. Normally that person is going to be pretty much like you, I say around 70-80% like you in terms of their age, values, journey. If you work out who YOU are and therefore who you are most likely to attract, you are going to find it much easier to find loyal clients who love you. This is especially important in coaching, where relationships and personal service and chemistry are everything in terms of your business success. Take the straight line approach, and start looking for the people who you naturally attract.

6. You can more easily create high value services.

People buy for 2 reasons: they buy because they want to solve a problem or they buy for pleasure. IOf you are working as a health or wellness coach, your are working to help solve your problem. Imagine if you went to see someone who knew exactly what your circumstances were and what you were going through and exactly what works. How would you feel? This is what I mean by high value services. If you can tailor your coaching, your tools, the resources that you use, the types of programs and services that you offer to a particular niche, they are going to feel as though you are servicing them and their specific needs. The perceived value of what you offer is going to be much higher than if you offer something general that might not tick all the boxes for them. That’s really important when it comes to pricing and earning what you want to earn in your business.

7. Finding a niche allows you to target your marketing and save you time money and the heartache of rejection.

When you know exactly who your ideal client is, you can go directly to where your client is and know that I higher proportion of people are going to take up your services because they are your kind of people. Simply by focussing on the people that you can most likely help and who are most likely to engage with you, you will feel more confident because you will get a greater response rate and more engagement, more buy in. It will save you time, money and heartache. Marketing becomes much easier when you target a niche

8. Most of a buying decision is based on feelings.

When you can relate to your ideal client and tell their story authentically, they will want to buy from you because they feel that sense of rapport and relationship. By building an emotional connection and trust with your ideal client, they are going to have stronger emotional connection with you in the beginning, which makes them more likely to buy from you

9. You can invest your heart and soul in what is most meaningful for you.

This will help you find a true sense of alignment. You will sense that you have deep meaning in your work, a purpose that is authentically you and what you are truly interested in. That means you will probably do a really good job at it. Imagine what it would feel like to turn up to work and love what you do and be totally immersed in it. Your enthusiasm and energy for what you do will in turn attract more clients to you. Instead of trying to be good at everything, just be good at everything, just be good at one thing. Figure out what you love to do, and just do that. It’s going to be way better for attracting clients and creating better outcomes.

Those are my reasons for starting out with a niche.

It makes everything clear and simple, and you can change as time goes on.

When you start out you may not be clear on who you are and who you’d like to target, but you can explore and experiment to find your niche. Put a time limit on in, I suggest around 3 – 6 months. Go out and meet people being around people and understanding their challenges and see what lights you up the best. Then take one direction and follow it for 6-12 months, give it a good go and see how it works for you.

Ready to find your niche?

You’re invited! The Habitology Membership is the perfect tool if you’re truly ready to grow a successful coaching business – and that starts with you. I encourage you to check it out. Learn more here: